Sex offender found guilty in U District elevator assault
A sexually violent predator who was freed by a jury rather than returned to prison in 2003 has been found guilty of assaulting two women at a University District apartment building less than a year later.
Seattle Times staff reporter
A sex predator who was freed by a jury rather than returned to prison in 2003 has been found guilty of assaulting two women at a University District apartment building less than a year later.
The victims said Curtis Thompson followed them into the building on Aug. 23, 2004, forced them into an elevator, robbed one of her engagement ring and forced the other to remove her top.
Thompson claimed the the confrontation with the two women in an elevator was "a misunderstanding" over his request for a cigarette. He has also claimed he was drunk when the incident occurred.
Thompson was charged with multiple counts of burglary, robbery, assault, attempted indecent liberties, unlawful imprisonment and attempting to disarm a police officer. He was found guilty on 10 of the counts and not guilty of one count of attempting to disarm a police officer.
Thompson faces life in prison because of his criminal history.
Throughout the three-week trial, Thompson was brought into the courtroom in a restraint chair because of his often-disruptive behavior. In the past, he has threatened to kill attorneys and a judge, and has scuffled with jail guards.
Thompson was convicted of four rapes in 1985 and refused sex-offender treatment while in prison.
In October 2003, after a three-week trial, a King County jury rejected a plea from prosecutors to send Thompson to a secure treatment center for sexual offenders. It was one of a handful of times since the process was created in 1990 that a sexually violent predator was released into the public instead of sent to the state's Special Commitment Center after incarceration.
Less than a year later, Thompson was arrested after he allegedly committed a string of crimes, including the attack in the elevator. He faces 15 total charges in three separate cases that allegedly occurred within days.
Thompson is slated to return to court in November to face trial in the rape of an Eastlake woman on Aug. 17, 2004.
In January, he will be tried in the stabbing death of Deborah Byars, who was found dead in her North Seattle apartment Aug. 26, 2004.
Jennifer Sullivan: 206-464-8294 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Information from The Seattle Times archives is contained in this report.
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